Christchurch geek icon Comics Compulsion up for sale

Comics Compulsion owner Tim Driver is selling his comic book store after 15 years of ownership.
ALDEN WILLIAMS/FAIRFAX NZ

Comics Compulsion owner Tim Driver is selling his comic book store after 15 years of ownership.

An icon of Christchurch geek culture is up for sale.

Comics Compulsion has sold comic books, graphic novels and board games, as well as hosting tabletop gaming sessions, for 23 years.

Owner Tim Driver has put the shop up for sale and is looking for someone who will help it thrive into the future.

Comics Compulsion's former Manchester St premises appeared in graphic novel The Magic Pen by Dylan Horrocks.
DYLAN HORROCKS

Comics Compulsion's former Manchester St premises appeared in graphic novel The Magic Pen by Dylan Horrocks.

"I love the shop, but it needs someone coming in with some new ideas and some energy," he said.

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"The shop isn't going anywhere. I will keep it running until we find a buyer. I want to be selective about the person that takes it over.

"It is not about the best deal for me but the best deal for the shop. I love the shop and I'm going to be a customer."

Driver purchased the shop 15 years ago from Allan Kemp, who founded Comics Compulsion in 1994.

The store started life on Manchester St with its distinctive blue and yellow sign hanging outside, but moved to Papanui after the 2011 earthquakes.

Driver ran the shop from his spare room in Casebrook for about six months after the quakes.

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"We had a spare room with a sliding door. We turned it into a shop and put it on Facebook. The most heartening thing about it was I realised how important Comics Compulsion was to a large part of the Christchurch community.

"There was a lot of love there. People were so pleased to see it up and running. I realised the shop was bigger than me. It is a really important shop to quite a lot of people."

He decided to sell because he had "run out of steam" and wanted someone to bring new energy to the store.

Over his 15 years behind the counter, Driver has seen comic books become part of mainstream culture.

"People know who Captain America is now. The big thing I have found is there is a lot more acceptance of it.

"Things like [US TV sitcom] The Big Bang Theory have helped that too."

The store has also become part of comic book lore in New Zealand, featuring in Dylan Horrocks' graphic novel The Magic Pen and Gonzalo Navarro's book Aotearoa Whispers.

"This shop will always be a work of love. It is more of a family than a business. We are a big part of a community.

"I have loved every minute of it."

 - Stuff

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